Frodo is the oldest dolphin in our family. She has freckles which come with age in the Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphin species. She is around 50 years old and has been with us since 1979. Although she is the smallest dolphin in our family, she is “the boss”. She is a mother to many of the dolphins and grandmother to Khanya. Frodo is famous for teaching the trainers. She loves coming to us for rubs and tickles in the morning. Frodo mimics bird sounds and sings beautifully.
Gambit was with us from 1976 until he passed away in April 2020. He was a legend and a true gentleman who was well-known all over the world. The picture on the right is of him with his youngest son Ingelosi and his beloved Frodo with whom he shared an incredible bond. He was loved and treasured, and we are honoured to have his legacy live on through his family. Gambit was the reason that millions of people fell in love with dolphins and the ocean.
Ingelosi was born just three weeks after we relocated from the old Sea World premises to uShaka Marine World. His name means angel in iSiZulu. He has smooth features and large pectoral, dorsal and tail fins. When dolphin calves are born, their dorsal and tail fins, which are made of cartilage, take a couple of days to firm up. Ingelosi is a typical teenager and loves lounging around. He loves being stroked by the trainers during sessions. His birthday is on 22 May (2004)
Affrika is an Atlantic Ocean bottlenose dolphin. This species of dolphin has a dark back and a shorter snout than other bottlenose dolphins. Affrika has the smallest tail of all the dolphins in our family. Dolphins lose heat through their tails which is why the Atlantic Ocean bottlenose dolphins' tails are shorter than those of the Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphin who live in warmer water.
Affrika is extremely energetic and always full of joy.
Kelpie is an Atlantic Ocean bottlenose dolphin. He has a gentle and enthusiastic character. He is the largest dolphin in our family and weighs around 380kg and measures 3.7m long. He loves learning and gets very excited during his training sessions. He is a wise mentor to the male dolphins. His birthday is on 22 January (1984).
Khanya is a gentle, enthusiastic dolphin. She is non-confrontational and doesn’t get involved in the hierarchy games that are natural for female dolphins. She is Kelpie’s daughter and Gambit and Frodo’s granddaughter. She is very watchful and always on the lookout for a game. She is easy to recognise as she has a markedly pink belly. She was born two months after Tombi, and it seems that they have a special bond between them. Her birthday is on 17 July (1993).
Khethiwe is Gambit and Frodo’s youngest daughter. Her name means “the chosen one” in isiZulu. She is a sweet natured dolphin who is quite vocal and is often heard calling for attention and toys. Dolphins vocalise through a hole on the top of their heads through which they breathe. Her birthday is 25 November (2008).
Khwezi is Frodo and Gambit’s oldest son. His name means morning star. He has a little white spot on his bottom jaw just like dad’s. Khwezi is very confident and is often seen pair bonding with the older boys. Pair bonding is when they swim in perfectly synchronised formation. It is still uncertain exactly how dolphins synchronise their movements.
Tombi is Gambit and Frodo’s eldest offspring. She is a beautiful dolphin who is a perfectionist and has been known to stop the other dolphins wondering off during training. Once when Khanya swam off with a hoop, Tombi went and fetched it and brought it back to the trainers. She loves being teacher’s pet. Her birthday is on 23 May (1993).
Zulu is a very creative girl. She loves making up new behaviours during training sessions. She is usually a step ahead of the trainers and keeps us on our toes. She has a small birthmark under her left pectoral fin. Dolphin’s pectoral fins have small bones which resemble that of the bones found in human arms and hands. Zulu is often seen stroking Khethiwe. Her birthday is on 9 December (1998).